Jobs for Dyslexia

Dyslexia is said to be the more known of learning disabilities. As we know, dyslexia is the disability of written comprehension. This results in poor educational outcomes which in turn can result in difficulty finding a stable job. Problems with reading and writing can make it difficult to apply for jobs. It may also be difficult to do some aspects of a job without the employer making some adjustments.[1]

This poses problems for dyslexic people as it lowers their self -worth.

Image courtesy of barbaraleung.com. Job hunting can be daunting especially for dyslexics.

Now to avoid this, what specific jobs are more suitable for dyslexics?

When considering a career or a job move, it is important for the dyslexic candidate to carefully and honestly think about their strengths, weaknesses and skill sets[1] as said by the British Dyslexia Association, since there are different sets of strengths and weaknesses per person so does the dyslexic. As said there is no all-in-one approach per each dyslexic. This means finding a job that matches a dyslexic’s talent and strength is a solution for this.

You may find it helpful to draw up a table of your strengths, your weaknesses and skill sets. Then look at the job description and see how closely you match.[1]

This is easier said than done. In reality difficulty lies ahead for dyslexics to find a suitable job. It’s not that there are only sparse jobs, but the way dyslexia presents to employers. Surely employers would prefer neurotypicals without appreciating dyslexics’ talents and abilities and this causes frustration to dyslexics. One dyslexic shared his experience as a jobseeker struggling in the job market[2]:

It has been a struggle to find a job since graduating; not just because less full-time jobs are available for graduates, but also because it can be time consuming and difficult to find appropriate roles, and to discuss my skills and abilities in writing. It’s not just a case of errors in grammar and spelling.

According to Gail Alexander, a dyslexia practitioner at the University of Southampton says that dyslexia does not manifest itself in the same way for every candidate. They may have problems with “ordering their ideas, clearly structuring sentences and giving explicit examples of qualities and experiences.”[2]

Now what really to do to help the dyslexic find a suitable job that matches his strengths?

If you have dyslexia and struggles in finding the right job for you, have yourself be assessed by a career coach, be it your parent, teacher, school guidance counselor or a private organisation that specialises in helping dyslexics or with learning disabilities, that is aside from yourself who’ll know your real strengths. This way you’ll have other people’s points of view regarding your strengths and weaknesses.

It’s important to make sure that you apply for jobs that match your abilities.[2] Then you can approach a dyslexia foundation or student/university support in your area to help you find the right job for you. Then fix your resume, practise proper grooming and rehearse for interview, etc.

But there’s still a challenge when it comes to the job application itself.  That is disclosing whether you have dyslexia. Nevertheless, in developed countries, dyslexia is included in disabilities which should never be discriminated. This means no employer has the right to deny you just because you’re dyslexic and that is discrimination. It is therefore important to disclose your dyslexia to your potential employer to avoid trouble when you’re already in the workplace.

Image courtesy of triangleinteractive.org.

What are the strengths people with dyslexia have?

Many dyslexic people have above average talents in a number of important areas. While not everyone will have outstanding gifts, all will have strengths. Skills such as big-picture thinking, lateral thinking and problem solving, visual strengths and an intuitive understanding of how things work are often the hallmarks of successful dyslexic people.[1]

When a dyslexic knows his or her strengths it would be easier for him or her to find a suitable job.

Usual strengths of dyslexics and suitable jobs[3]:

Visual Thinking

Dyslectics are visual thinkers who process information through images rather than words.[3]

Spatial Relationships

In their 2011 book, “The Dyslexic Advantage,” Brock and Fernette Eide explore the strong sense of spatial relationships that is common among dyslectics. The Eides describe dyslectics as big-picture thinkers who are able to see how different components relate.[3]

Business Careers

Many dyslectics grow up struggling in school, where they are seen as slow or handicapped. Julie Logan, a professor at London’s Cass Business School, believes the survival skills dyslectic children pick up in school are skills that lead to success in business. Dyslexic children face continual failure in traditional schools steeped in reading and writing. But the ability to accept setbacks and failure as part of the process is a key trait among successful entrepreneurs.[3]

Creative Jobs and Careers

In settings dominated by the linear logic of language, some dyslectics disorient themselves and take refuge in their visual thoughts that they experience almost as if they were real. Their imaginative strength and their ability to understand through feelings, or to empathize, gives them some natural abilities for performing arts careers such as acting and dance.[3]

What careers or jobs are dyslexia friendly?

People with dyslexia are frequently successful in entrepreneurship, sales, art and design, entertainment, acting, engineering, architecture, I.T., computer animation, technical and practical trades and professions.[1]

With this the dyslexic has more chances of having a long term job or career.

Reference:

  1. http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/dyslexic/workplace-information
  2. http://www.theguardian.com/careers/careers-blog/jobseekers-dyslexia-challenges-solutions
  3. http://work.chron.com/jobs-dyslexic-adults-18389.html

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